Best Video Quality, Either Camera or Camcorder For Under 350? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 02:24 AM - Thread Starter
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Great forum you have here guys!

 

 I've been lurking for almost a month and I have finally decided to post a question I have been researching for some time now. I hope you can help me out! I am a teacher and as such I get the summer months off. Each summer my girlfriend and I go on a month long vacation to different places around the world. For our last adventure I just took my iphone 5, but I'd like to step up my video quality with a device that is easier to hold and shoots better video.  The purpose the device is to make travel home movies/documentaries to remember and share our times abroad.

 

Here's what I want in a device:

 

1) Great video quality above all else

2) Good ergonomics. I have a very difficult time shooting video with my iphone, and overall it's just not fun due to the shakiness.

3) Excellent low light performance.

 

 

That's it really. A lot of people are very interested in big optical zooms but honestly if something is interesting to me I like to get up close to it to shoot it...I also don't like the look of even optical zoom from what I've seen. While I see why people like huge optical zooms it would be a niche for me, and I'd rather have a larger sensor and better image quality. 

 

A few cameras I'm considering due to the great posters on this forum are:

 

Lx7 - $260 used

HX50- $288 used

EOS M - Although I'm not really considering this as much because I don't want to buy or fiddle with lenses.

RX100 - This camera looks great for shooting videos but it's really out of my budget. I'm being a tightwad because I want to spend the majority of the money on the vacation :)

 

 

I'm also considering these camcorders:

 

Canon Vixia HF 50  for $300 usd refurbished

Sony CX260 for $229 usd used

 

 

Did I miss anything? I would be ever so greatful if one of you would steer me in the right direction. Thank you very much!

 

 

Notkevin 

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post #2 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 03:14 AM
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Hi notkevin and welcome to the forum! The best video on your list will come from the $226 (body only) EOS M - if you don't want to fool with lenses, why not just get a brand new EOS M with the 18-55mm kit lens for $311?

Here is a travel video shot with this camera/lens combination:


http://vimeo.com/66437311


For $311, you'll have the best video bang for the buck - you won't have to change lenses if you don't want to - and you'll have a new camera with a warranty.

One thing to be careful of - these are closeout prices on the EOS M and won't last forever.

Good luck!

Bill
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post #3 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 03:19 AM - Thread Starter
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Thank you very much Bill! You are one of the posters who I was talking about earlier. I think I've read all your posts! 

 

 

 

Man the Eos-M video looks great. I was also reticent to go for it because I was under the impression that it only did very well in low light with a 22mm lens that didn't have internal stabilization, but from what I can make out in the video description, he's using the kit lens and low light looks great. Awesome! I think this will be perfect for my needs.

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post #4 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 03:41 AM
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Forget about the HX50V if you want good low light performance. The LX7 is good at low light, but its kinda big for a pocket camera and its pictures are not good enough. The RX100 is good at low light and has nice pictures.

So im considering that you dont care about zoom, you need something small and easy to use, and im also considering you will want to take pictures (when traveling)

From your list I think that the best choice is the EOS M + a fast 1.4 or 1.8 prime. You will have the best pictures and the best low light performance. I did a fast search on amazon and it looks like there is no fast prime for the EOS M (mark should know better), so maybe a 50mm f1.8 canon lens + an adapter.

I'll give you another suggestion:

- The Sony NEX 5 or 6. Why? It has a much better autofocus than the Canon, it has a bigger sensor with less megapixels, so that means better image quality, better dynamic range, better low light performance etc. It has a native 50mm f1.8 lens that is simply beautifull. The pictures will be better. Some people like the EOS M videos because they are more saturated and have more contrast. I like the Sony better because it has more dynamic range and its less digital looking.

.

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post #5 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 03:48 AM
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oops... im sorry. I missed the under 350 bucks biggrin.gif

go for the EOS M. Try to find some money for a fast prime. The kit lens is not good enough for low light. The LX7 will probably be better than the EOS M + kit lens in low light videos
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post #6 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 03:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Thank you very much TheDest! In my mind it is EOS M vs. LX7. The reason I didn't want to push the budget up any more is because I'm going to be on a month holiday as is, and I'd rather use the funds there rather than for a lens or whatever. I'm actually not that interested in still photos at all and that's why I was considering camcorders as well...I'm just interested in the best quality of video possible.

 

I will have to think about the low light thing. I lived in Bangkok, and whenever I tried to take a video with my iphone it was grainy and noisy because it's a dark city. I missed out on a lot of cool shots I could have otherwise gotten...but the video Bill showed me of the EOS with the 18-55mm lens looked great to my eyes in what I would consider 'low light' I think I will buy both and test them to see which is better to my eye and hands.

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post #7 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 04:09 AM
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mm i cant agree with your comment. [Some people like the EOS M videos because they are more saturated and have more contrast. I like the Sony better because it has more dynamic range and its less digital looking ] thedest,saturation can be set to a preferable level and Neutral has a less vivid look than other profiles.But regarding the 18-55mm lens i would not rate it good in low light.
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post #8 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 04:58 AM
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If you want low light quality the new 20MP Sony A3000 with EVF looks just as good as the $6,000 16MP Nikon D4 @ 1600 iso and is on sale for $348 with free shipping with the 18-55mm OSS zoom.
http://www.sonyalpharumors.com/50-off-on-the-new-a3000-and-a-new-review/


Sony A3000 vs Nikon D4 @ 1600 iso:
http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3767/10676487114_ec81b5532e_o.jpg

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post #9 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 05:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flintyplus View Post

mm i cant agree with your comment. [Some people like the EOS M videos because they are more saturated and have more contrast. I like the Sony better because it has more dynamic range and its less digital looking ] thedest,saturation can be set to a preferable level and Neutral has a less vivid look than other profiles.But regarding the 18-55mm lens i would not rate it good in low light.

You are not wrong. I was talking about the Standard picture profile. And its a matter of taste. Mark posted an example of the EOS M in neutral mode. For me, it looks far better than the Standard picture profile. I dont know if the OP wants to play with picture profiles though.

Here is the link: https://vimeo.com/74063702
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post #10 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 04:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Do you guys think video image stabilization is going to be a problem with the EOS M? I know the 18-55mm lens comes internally stabilized but since I'm obviously not going to be traveling with a tripod it's important to me.

 

 

Thanks!

 

 

 

Also from reading this forum, I think I already know the answer to this, but I'd most likely have to pay double or more the price for EOS M quality video on a standard camcorder correct? 

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post #11 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 04:50 PM
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If you use a lens with IS, like the kit zoom, the stabilization is equivalent to that of a camcorder. Canon is investing heavily in redoing its lens line to make the lenses good for video - this means both faster AF, OIS, and no noise. The M kit lens has all three.
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post #12 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 05:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Mark thanks! I have really enjoyed reading most of your posts over the last few weeks.

 

 

I just ordered the EOS M with the 18-55mm lens from amazon new for 300 shipped. Hopefully this will give me enough time to learn how to use it in the coming months before my trip. We're going to Russia!

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post #13 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 05:28 PM
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Congratulations! That's a great deal for $300.


Look forward to seeing video from your trip smile.gif

Bill
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post #14 of 35 Old 11-12-2013, 10:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks Bill, super excited to get it!


I was wondering if you guys could help me...I've been looking on youtube for indoor lower light video of the EOS M with the 18-55mm lens kit and I'm having a hard time finding any. I'd appreciate it if anyone had any videos on hand, if not I'll keep looking and eventually make my own. I see most of them are 22mm which I am not intending to buy.




Thanks!
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post #15 of 35 Old 11-13-2013, 02:46 AM
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Mark did this autofocus test at ISO 1600 with the 18-55:

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post #16 of 35 Old 11-13-2013, 12:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Awesome. Wanted to say thank you to Bill, Mark, thedest, jogbia, and flintyplus for the helpful replies! Seriously, if it weren't for you guys this forum would be dead like most of the other digital video forums online.

 

Also if it weren't for this forum I'd have bought a vixia hf 400, which doesn't come close to the EOS M. My future home movies thank you! If you guys dont' mind I'll stick around, and maybe learn a thing or two.

 

 

 

 

 

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post #17 of 35 Old 11-13-2013, 12:18 PM
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Sharing stuff here is the best way to learn. We fight most of the time, but thats how we roll biggrin.gif

One year ago I knew nothing about cameras. I started here too. Man, I had no idea what ISO meant or what a camera sensor was biggrin.gif
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post #18 of 35 Old 11-13-2013, 12:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by notkevin View Post

Awesome. Wanted to say thank you to Bill, Mark, thedest, jogbia, and flintyplus for the helpful replies! Seriously, if it weren't for you guys this forum would be dead like most of the other digital video forums online.

Also if it weren't for this forum I'd have bought a vixia hf 400, which doesn't come close to the EOS M. My future home movies thank you! If you guys dont' mind I'll stick around, and maybe learn a thing or two.





Notkevin
 

Make sure you get yourself a couple oF NDX filters,NDX8 for sunny filming and a NDX4 for even dull outdoor filming.
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post #19 of 35 Old 11-14-2013, 02:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Make sure you get yourself a couple oF NDX filters,NDX8 for sunny filming and a NDX4 for even dull outdoor filming.

 

 

Please correct me if I'm wrong but these filters will change the amount of light that gets into the camera lens and make very bright filming clearer?

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post #20 of 35 Old 11-14-2013, 03:21 PM
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Please correct me if I'm wrong but these filters will change the amount of light that gets into the camera lens and make very bright filming clearer?

Yes with cameras they make a big difference more so than camcorders,i never film in any daylight without an NDX4 or an NDX8 in good light.
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post #21 of 35 Old 11-14-2013, 03:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flintyplus View Post

Yes with cameras they make a big difference more so than camcorders,i never film in any daylight without an NDX4 or an NDX8 in good light.

Actually, I think they are more important for video: in video you cannot just increase the shutter speed like you can for stills to cut down the light (to maintain smooth motion). So, without the ND filters you either have to really close down the lens, with the resulting diffraction losses, or risk overexposure. And, you cannot control dof without the filters.
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post #22 of 35 Old 11-14-2013, 11:41 PM
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Well i can manage if i do not have a NDX on me with my HF-G30 at the time ,adjustments are easy and there is the built in ND as well,also with the EOS M only having an lcd screen which i struggle with in bright light does not help,for me the EOS M PQ looks better with an NDX filter.
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post #23 of 35 Old 11-15-2013, 03:24 AM - Thread Starter
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I bought the filters they should be here in a few days. I was wondering, if I'm shooting inside, do I take the filters off?

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post #24 of 35 Old 11-15-2013, 07:33 AM
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Quote:
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I bought the filters they should be here in a few days. I was wondering, if I'm shooting inside, do I take the filters off?

Yes. Indoors = low light. You will have wide open aperture and you want to keep the ISO down.
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post #25 of 35 Old 12-04-2013, 06:24 AM - Thread Starter
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Just wanted to update the thread. I have been playing with the EOS M for the last few weeks and while I really like the picture and video quality, the slow autofocus even after the firmware update made me send it back. Honestly I think if I had spent more time with the camera I could have gotten much more out of it but I didn't feel good about the purchase and I didn't really want to bother.

Since then I picked up a FZ200 and I have been following along with graham houghton and I have found the camera much more enjoyable having a virtual mentor to help me along.

If anyone reading this is concerned about the EOS M not being a quality camera don't be, it just wasn't right for me. It just goes to show that it's better to not suffer from "paralysis analysis" and over research because you'll never know if a camera is right for you until it's in your hands.
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post #26 of 35 Old 12-06-2013, 02:12 PM
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Thanks for the feedback. Good to hear you have a camera that works for you. Fast, accurate autofocus is important to me too. Canon fixed it in the 70D, but that's a $1049 camera frown.gif

Enjoy your FZ200!

Best of the holidays,

Bill
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post #27 of 35 Old 12-07-2013, 11:52 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the feedback. Good to hear you have a camera that works for you. Fast, accurate autofocus is important to me too. Canon fixed it in the 70D, but that's a $1049 camera frown.gif

Enjoy your FZ200!

Best of the holidays,

Bill

 

 

Bill just wanted to say thanks for all of your great posts. I don't know if you guys know it, but guys like yourself and others have been such a valuable asset to me. The information you guys post sometimes will go unanswered/unappreciated at times so I feel it's important to say thank you and show respect because you guys are knowledgeable, obviously passionate and take time out of your days to help out less knowledgable new members like myself saving us time and money.

 

Happy Holidays as well, and thank you again.

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post #28 of 35 Old 12-12-2013, 08:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by notkevin View Post
 

Great forum you have here guys!

 

 I've been lurking for almost a month and I have finally decided to post a question I have been researching for some time now. I hope you can help me out! I am a teacher and as such I get the summer months off. Each summer my girlfriend and I go on a month long vacation to different places around the world. For our last adventure I just took my iphone 5, but I'd like to step up my video quality with a device that is easier to hold and shoots better video.  The purpose the device is to make travel home movies/documentaries to remember and share our times abroad.

 

Here's what I want in a device:

 

1) Great video quality above all else

2) Good ergonomics. I have a very difficult time shooting video with my iphone, and overall it's just not fun due to the shakiness.

3) Excellent low light performance.

 

 

That's it really. A lot of people are very interested in big optical zooms but honestly if something is interesting to me I like to get up close to it to shoot it...I also don't like the look of even optical zoom from what I've seen. While I see why people like huge optical zooms it would be a niche for me, and I'd rather have a larger sensor and better image quality. 

 

A few cameras I'm considering due to the great posters on this forum are:

 

Lx7 - $260 used

HX50- $288 used

EOS M - Although I'm not really considering this as much because I don't want to buy or fiddle with lenses.

RX100 - This camera looks great for shooting videos but it's really out of my budget. I'm being a tightwad because I want to spend the majority of the money on the vacation :)

 

 

I'm also considering these camcorders:

 

Canon Vixia HF 50  for $300 usd refurbished

Sony CX260 for $229 usd used

 

 

Did I miss anything? I would be ever so greatful if one of you would steer me in the right direction. Thank you very much!

 

 

Notkevin 

 

Used..? You gotta be kidding. Please Visit B&H Photo Video. Your prices are very close to what it costs for Brand New Prices.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Ok, as far as video, the Sony A3000 does not take good video, in fact, it takes AVCHD 1080/60i ( That's Interlaced ) Not good. My new lumix lx7 can do 60i & 60p, and quite frankly, the 60i is garbage. there's lines in the video. ( Click Here to view Sony A3000 web page ) check out the specs, you'll see it only records in 60i.

 

But it takes Great 20 Mega Pixel Photos, and has a APS-C Sensor, which is very good, anything better would be a Full Frame Sensor, which is very expensive. The APS-C Sensor, is much bigger than most point & shoots, and what's in most Camcorders nowadays.

 

From Sony Website. ( Sony A3000 ) - $349.99 NEW !

  • Recording

    • Panorama Still Image Size : Horizontal Wide: 12,416 x 1,856 (23M) Horizontal Std.: 8,192 x 1,856 (15M) Vertical Wide: 2,160 x 5,536 (12M) Vertical Std.: 2,160 x 3,872 (8.4M)
    • Video Resolution : AVCHD™: FX - 1920 x 1080/60i@24Mbps FH - 1920 x 1080/60i@17Mbps FX - 1920 x 1080/24p@24Mbps FH - 1920 x 1080/24p@17Mbps MP4: HD - 1440 x 1080/ 30p@12Mbps VGA - 640 x 480/ 30p@3Mbps
    • Audio Format : Dolby Digital (AC-3) / MPEG-4 AAC-LC
    • Video Mode : AVCHD™ / MP4 (MPEG-4 AVC (H.264))
    • Color Space : Stills: sRGB, AdobeRGB Movie: sRGB standard (with sYCC gamut) and Adobe RGB standard compatible with TRILUMINOS™ Color
    • Still Image Size 16:9 : L (17 MP) 5456 x 3064, M (12 MP) 3872 x 2176, S (4.2 MP) 2736 x 1824
    • Still Image Size 3:2 : L (20 MP) 5456 x 3632, M (10 MP) 3872 x 2576, S (5 MP) 2736 x 1824
    • Still Image Mode : JPEG (Standard, Fine), RAW+JPEG
    • Media Type : Memory Stick PRO Duo™/Pro-HG Duo™ media; SD, SDHC and SDXC memory card
    • Still Image Max Effective Resolution : 20.1 Megapixels
    • Video Signal : NTSC color, EIA standards
    • Microphone/Speaker : Built-in Stereo Microphone/ Built-in monaural speaker; volume settings in 8 steps between 0 and 7
    • Still Image File Format : JPEG (DCF Ver. 2.0, Exif Ver.2.3, MPF Baseline compliant), RAW (Sony ARW 2.3format)

 

 

The LUMIX LX7 takes very good low light Pictures and Video. I just got one. You can adjust the aperture on the fly, WHILE RECORDING VIDEO. But as far as adjusting the ISO, and Shutter speed, it's best to do that before starting taking a video. The Lumix LX7 has a F/1.4 lens.

 

But it's sensor isn't close to how big an APS-C Sensor is.

 

But it's bigger than the Vixia R400, and most other Camcorders in and above it's price range, (1/1.7" CMOS) vs (1/4.85" CMOS)

 

Takes very good video, with VERY FAST Shutter Speeds. from 1/30 to 1/20,000 Shutter Speeds. Takes 1080/60p 28 mbps, or 1080/30p 20 mbps.

 

Takes 10 Mega Pixel Photos. That might not be good, but from where I can see, they are very nice pictures.

 

Can get the LUMIX LX7 for $300.99 Brand New !. From B&H Video ( Click Here )

 

 

 

 

The Lumix LX7 beats the Sony Cyber-shot HX50V. As far as video goes, the Lumix LX7 has a bigger sensor. Since your not really worried about photos, the Lumix LX7 can do the same thing the Sony Cyber-shot HX50V can do, but has a bigger sensor. The Lumix LX7 costs less too. If your not worried about WiFi, the Lumix LX7 is better.

 

 

The EOS M is nice, but it only records in 30 fps @ 1080p. It's got a bigger sensor, and it takes better pictures. It's nice.. But it doesn't record in 60 FPS.

 

 

 

Idk, it's really up to you what you want. I just spent the last month researching, learning about Camera's and Camcorder Specs. It turned out for the $300 I wanted to spend on a new video camera, that I'd get the LUMIX LX7. It was the best out of every thing that was out there. Brand New... I don't really trust used items, I'd rather buy New.

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post #29 of 35 Old 12-12-2013, 10:06 AM
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The A3000 has an EVF but it cost $160 extra for the optional LX7 EVF and the A3000 kills the LX7 at high iso for stills.

A3000 vs LX7 @6400 iso
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post #30 of 35 Old 12-12-2013, 10:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info guys. I ended up buying the FZ200. I was impressed by the video and picture quality and I really like the zoom. It's a great camera overall and probably the last I'll buy for 5+ years as I'm not a professional and it does everything I want and more.

There's also a great tutorial series on YouTube.
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